The practice of Buddhism in Tibet is encompassed by the eight major practice traditions called in Tibet the Eight Chariots of the Practice Lineages of Tibetan Buddhism. The Eight Chariots, or conveyances, refer to the eight major practice lineages of Tibetan learning and attainment, traditions which can be traced directly back through the centuries of the history of Tibet and beyond that into India. These traditions encompass the major schools and lineages within Tibet.
The Eight Traditions, with their key scriptural sources, are as follows:
The main doctrinal lineage of Kama, the Ancient Translation School known as Nyingmapa: (Key scriptural sources include: 1) Scripture of the Great Assemblage ('dus pa mdo), 2) Guhyagarbha Tantra (sgyu 'phrul drwa ba), 3) Mind Section (sems sde). In addition, the Eight Sadhanas Sections (sgrub pa sde brgyad), and the core of Dzogchen, The Heart Essence (snying thig).) More on the Nyingma lineage
Atisha's lineage, the Old Kadampa School (Key scriptural sources include: The Graded Path for the Three Types of Individuals: Lamp of the Path of Enlightenment (byang chub lam sgron), Key Instructions of the Practices of Sixteen Spheres (thig le bcu drug), and similar texts. Tsongkhapa and his lineage, the New Kadampa School emphasizes philosophical doctrine.)
Lineage of the glorious Sakyapa: (Key scriptural sources include: The Instruction on the Nine-fold Path and Result (lam 'bras).)
The Four Major Schools and Eight Minor Schools of the lineage of the Marpa Kagyü Tradition (Key scriptural sources include: The Four Transmitted Precepts Consolidated in One, The Path of Skillful Means, The Six Dharmas of Naropa, and The Path of Liberation Mahamudra.)
The Shangpa Kagyü: (Key scriptural sources include: The Lineage of Yogi Khyungpo Naljor, and The Teachings of the Five-fold Ultimate Reality, (mthar thug lnga ldan gyi chos skor).)
6) Shije and Chö Lineages: "Pacification of Suffering" and "Genuine Dharma of Severance"
Phadampa Sangye's and Machik Lapdron's lineage: (Key scriptural sources include: Pacification of Suffering (zhi byed), and its branch teaching Genuine Dharma of Severance (gcod), and related texts.)
Vajra Yoga Instruction Lineage, (Key scriptural sources include: the intention of the root Tantras, essence of all completion stage practice (sampanakrama), Six Applications of Kalachakra (sbyor ba yan lag drug).)
The Great Yogi Orgyenpa Rinchenpal's Lineage: (Key scriptural sources include: the Three Vajra Instructions of Body, Speech, and Mind (rdo rje gsum gyi bsnyen sgrub).)
Buddhism consists of the teachings of the Buddha, which are known as the "buddha-dharma," meaning "teachings of the awakened one."
The Buddha established the spiritual tradition of Buddhism after he attained the complete realization of the true reality of all phenomena.
Buddhism in India developed rapidly in four phases and soon spread throughout Asia and subsequently to other countries throughout the world.
The Four Noble Truths, the first teachings of the Buddha, are the foundation for all Buddhist practice.
The whole corpus of teachings today have come to be known as the Three Yanas (vehicles), or cycles of the buddhist teachings.
Buddhism in Tibet developed when teachers from India brought Dharma to Tibet beginning in the 7th Century CE, which developed into the four major schools of Tibetan Buddhism— the Nyingma, Kagyu, Sakya and Geluk.
Another way of looking at the major continuing traditions of Tibetan Buddhism divides them into eight major practice lineages called the Eight Chariots.
Ten Tibetans are singled out for their foundational role in the transmission of Buddhism to Tibet. They are known as the Ten Pillars.